Consumers are newly driven to live better for longer. Healthline Media experts discuss the support consumers need to act on their goals.
Today, more consumers say they want to live longer and feel better doing it. Jenny Yu, MD FACS, Healthline Media’s Chief Health Officer, calls this “wellspan” — lifespan in which a sense of wellbeing exists.
The top proactive measures that actually improve health and longevity are familiar — fitness, nutrition, sleep, and managing chronic conditions. All are easier said than done. Today’s consumers still need help separating longevity fact from fiction, as well as support in building a sustainable plan they can stick with for the long term.
We spoke to several Healthline team members to dig into the consumer trends around longevity and understand how the health industry and marketers can best lend support.
Q: What’s driving the shift from quick fixes to a more proactive approach to longevity?
People are spending more than ever on their health. Oftentimes, these are fads that get deprioritized quickly. The more consumers try quick fixes, the more they realize they don't always pan out. You can pour a lot of time and money into quick fixes just to be in the same spot in 3-6 months. — Jade Hilder, Health & Wellness Sales Director
Q: 29% of consumers say they would pay a premium for prevention-focused products that promote health and wellness. As consumers turn toward more holistic approaches to longevity, what healthy behaviors do you hope to see?
There are many more options for behavior tracking, supplements, and fitness guidance, leading more people to try these wellbeing solutions. But are these trendy solutions actually driving long-term impact, or are they still just quick fixes?
The impact of proactive health behaviors will ebb and flow throughout your life — many factors contribute to whether they collectively drive better wellspan.
Personalization and coordination across the health industry can help unlock the value of the proactive approach. A fitness coach, physician, and the food industry may not seem like they are interconnected in the consumer's health journey, but they in fact are the nodes that can build a stronger holistic approach to longevity. — Jenny Yu, MD FACS, Chief Health Officer
Q: Age is no longer the limiting factor it once was. How is the Boomer generation in particular redefining the concept of longevity?
Boomers are more engaged in their health than ever before. They're not only looking to live longer, but they want to live well longer so they can continue to be active and exercise, have a rich social life, and spend time with their grandkids. It's motivating them to adopt healthy behaviors. — Marie Leonte, Director, Consumer Insights
Q: Why is proactive health crucial for people with chronic conditions?
The healthcare system is primarily designed for reactive health — treating illness and symptoms as they arise. But people with chronic conditions are trying to avoid further complications and slow down potential disease progression, which means they need to manage their health holistically through nutrition, exercise, mental health, and sleep.
A holistic approach can be powerful. For instance, in our research, people talk about how eating certain foods triggers symptoms for them, but eating the right foods helps them feel better by relieving joint pain or giving them more energy. This helps people feel better about themselves, which then feeds even more healthy behaviors and helps them gain greater control over their health. — Marie Leonte, Director, Consumer Insights
Q: Does the health industry do enough to help people take a proactive versus reactive approach to long-term wellbeing?
Most manufacturers and corporations are still focused on short-term sales and profitability. But some understand that proactive messaging on wellbeing can help you win over time. More brands are offering whole-body health information to help their patients lead healthier lives, and this approach will likely lead to loyalty and adherence for the brand. — Vic Ruvolo, Pharmaceutical Sales Director
Q: What should brands and marketers do to educate people about science-backed longevity solutions and encourage sustainable lifestyle changes?
Consumers are now turning to a broad range of channels to find information and inspiration about wellness and lifestyle changes. Brands and marketers should take an omnichannel approach to sharing research-backed longevity solutions and target the content and strategy to match each channel. This information should be broken down into easy-to-follow steps that are approachable, educational, and, most importantly, attainable. — Jen Draeger, VP, Integrated Marketing
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